Sometimes, life throws us a traffic jam. Sometimes, hospitals are FULL and there are supposedly no beds available. And, drug free labors can be extremely unpredictable & frankly babies care less if mom is even at a hospital. Sometimes, a detour is warranted. That is exactly what Paramedic Lindsay Robertson realized but this time she wasn't in her uniform, nor @ work.
It is not every day, I have the pleasure to assist a couple who has overcome so many challenges together to bring life into the world. Lindsay & Brooke chose artificial insemination with the help of an anonymous sperm donor as their choice for beginning their Family. Brooke even was able to assist the nurse and push the syringe that contained the donor sperm during the IUI procedure. They chose to train for twelve plus weeks in The Bradley Method of natural birth. Why? Lindsay is a Paramedic & Brooke a Social Worker, both understand the importance of a great start into Life. Especially, when low intervention natural birth is still considered the safest route of passage into the world. Brooke helped coach her wife through eating right & exercising, in addition, daily practicing their relaxation to be ready to rock difficult labor contractions & that is exactly what they did!
Lindsay had allowed her membranes to be stripped that morning to avoid an induction since she was both overdue & the amniotic fluid was low. She had experienced some early labor contractions Tuesday evening but she had experienced those multiple times before. No doubt the moon phases & primrose oil didn't hurt either. When we are "overdue" we try many things to progress on our own, free of chemical induction, if all possible. The plan was she & Brooke would labor at home as long as possible & then head over to their uptown hospital closer to late labor/ transition. However, things seemed to be progressing very quickly. I had speculated this might be to case since she had experienced multiple bouts of pre-labor in weeks / months before. Before, leaving for her birthplace, Lindsay seemed to have the look of serious late labor. She was experiencing a lot of unusual pressure for an earlier stage of labor & on top of that her contractions were growing in intensity at a faster than normal rate with some lasting in excess of 120 seconds & as close as 2-3 minutes apart. Such intense contractions that Lindsay wanted me to stay on phone her while I was packing my car for my Ga trip, in which I was supposed to leave around noon, to head down for my own daughter's family covered dinner / baby shower. Earlier through the nite & day, I had been @ Novant Matthews with their classmates, holding a leg literally as Lindsay & Brooke were calling. As soon as that precious baby was out & into moms arms, I left one hospital & had just enough to time to grab lunch/ pack the car again before heading out to CMC MAIN. The funny part was, although, I have assisted many births over the years, this was my first time assisting a client through hard labor contractions via facetime. It's amazing technology!
While I was coaching Lindsay up & over her contractions, Brooke was quickly packing their car for departure. It was evident from both Lindsay's breathing & facial expressions things were moving along quicker than average. Upon heading uptown, Lindsay was growing concerned her dr office had asked her to come there first that there were no beds at the hospital. Obviously, this did not set well literally as the pressure was growing & so was the intensity of the contractions. The couple made a quick decision to detour to the closest hospital. I sent a fb message to Tina Hayes & the midwife team at Piedmont OBGYN & to alert the crew @ CMC Pineville. I arrived to find 4 smiling nurses and a wheel chair right inside the front door! l helped Brooke maneuver around to the maternity center behind the main hospital by phone since she had not been there and talk about curb service... They arrived at CMC around 4:20p and the nurses quickly got Lindsay situated from the car to triage while I parked their car. Lindsay learned she was only 4cm dilated but because of late labor signs & intense contractions she could stay or make her way over to Main. Of course, another car ride was not either of their idea of fun. On another note, I often remind my students, I don't care what your dilation is bc in an unmedicated scenario things can change very quickly! While in triage with no way to find a good position in that horribly uncomfortable bed, Lindsay looked at me and asked, "Pamela Sauls is this going to get even worse be honest?" To which I replied, "Yes, but do I think you can get through it unmedicated YES! You are brave, strong & you have an amazing supportive team to help you!" With both mom & baby doing great, we opted to get Lindsay comfy in the tub (after her 30 minute strip of EFM was complete) and things began to rock & roll again. Wasn't long before the water broke in tub shortly after 6p and we continued to work while she labored in the darkness & quiet of the bathroom. When it was time to monitor baby again, we placed mom on the toilet to relax her bum while we dried her off. Once out of the water, gravity was back and so was the growing pressure. I had a feeling push phase was right around the corner and had previously called Kalle Thompson Sousana to join us. She has been teaching a provisional series of Bradley Method ® classes under my mentoring and is a doula in training, as well. She will no doubt be an asset to our #CharlotteBirthFamily. It was inevitable push phase was right around the corner. The two we're in sync as Brooke coached her through her labor marathon. I slipped out to head to Ga shortly after 8pm and not shortly behind me arriving at his own destination aka momma & mommy' s arms was Baby Holden Barrick @ 8:56pm on June 15th weighing in 7lbs 5oz 20 in long!! Special thanks to the fabulous nurses who are so dedicated to the natural process @ CMC Pineville & Nancy, CNM of Piedmont OBGYN for welcoming a very special couple who decided to take a detour @ 4 and boy did it pay off, 4 hrs later two amazing women became Parents! Congrats Lindsay & Brooke your lives are forever changed get ready for a lifetime of new signs including the ever popular, "Baby on Board"... Until he grows up, of course 😉
YourBirthHelper's favorite line... "Do You Trust Me!"
Ah good times!! YourBirthHelper.com & The Bradley Method ® serves all expectant clients: married/ single, husband coached, sister/ friend coached (even if you come alone ~remember, you will endure labor regardless) and as in this amazing birth story... mommie & mommie couples!!
Dr. Robert A. Bradley was a very smart man! His method WORKS!!!!!! Birth hasn't changed, the definition of Coach has. Don't let the words "Husband Coached" keep you from acquiring the skills necessary to birth naturally. ALL MOMS should have quality education regardless of marital status or sexual preference.